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  1. #1
    Content $ Queen Ebudae's Avatar
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    Hi. I was checking my son's PC and still working to rid him of all the parasites on it. I went and took a look at one of my sites and was horrified to see that banners were being replaced by their banners - for instance, one from Essential Apparel showed up with some kind of hot babes banners!

    So I looked around and these scoundrels are doing it on almost every banner I have (all sizes). And when you refresh, you get different ones. Didn't take a screen shot because I wasn't sure how to do it from his PC.

    I did right click - properties - and it told me they were coming from "messagebroadcaster"

    So, next I try to get rid of it. I have Spybot search and destroy, Spyhunter and CWShredder. I have tried and tried to remove these programs but they just keep reinstalling themselves. And my son NEVER downloaded them of his own free will and he does not use Kazza either - must have been a driveby.


    Just a quick check showed that all of Akiva's programs, Mondera, Collectibles Today, JC Whitney, Drivewerks, Net Magazines, Eastwood, 99 Flowers - all of your banners are being replaced!


    So, I was thinking - lol.

    If all of you merchants got together and complained it might do a world of good. You could together do more than alone. If you could make a merchants group dedicated to getting rid of this stuff it would help. And if together you would start contacting elected officials, we might get some laws passed against this kind of thing.

    I am sure this affects your pocketbook just like it does ours. So could we have some help from the merchants against this kind of thing???



    Ebudae

    If you understand, things are just as they are...
    if you do not understand, things are just as they are.

    << Hope you don't mind - I edited your title to get more attention to this issue >>

    [This message was edited by Catalyst on January 26, 2004 at 06:18 PM.]

  2. #2
    Affiliate Marketing Consultant Linda - 5starAffiliatePrograms's Avatar
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    Ebudae,

    I just did a Google search and it looks like these ads may be coming from Gator (Claria) according to this source. It also talks about how he may have gotten it adn how to remove it.

    http://www.jimworld.com/apps/webmast...embers-lounge/

    A bunch of other forums are reporting problems with this too. Just search Google.

    I will post this in the Managers forum.

    Linda Buquet 714.754.1280 :: Catalyst eMarketing Promotion & PR (Partner Relations)
    <font color="#0000FF">5 Star Affiliate Programs</font> :: High Paying, Parasite-Free, Partner-Centered Merchants!

  3. #3
    Content $ Queen Ebudae's Avatar
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    Nope - he never had Gator, so thats not it. Thanks for checking though!

    But bottom line - we need the merchants to help us!!

    Ebudae

    If you understand, things are just as they are...
    if you do not understand, things are just as they are.

  4. #4
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    some info on it
    http://www.google.com/search?sourcei...agebroadcaster

    Seems to be a bad one
    Spy Wiper, Mail Wiper
    just read some of the pages from the link above, lots of info.

  5. #5
    Affiliate Marketing Consultant Linda - 5starAffiliatePrograms's Avatar
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    I posted to the AM forum.

    Linda Buquet 714.754.1280 :: Catalyst eMarketing Promotion & PR (Partner Relations)
    <font color="#0000FF">5 Star Affiliate Programs</font> :: High Paying, Parasite-Free, Partner-Centered Merchants!

  6. #6
    Affiliate Marketing Consultant Linda - 5starAffiliatePrograms's Avatar
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    Here's an in=depth article from Wired

    "One of Rines' latest ventures is Adcaster Extreme, a software program that broadcasts pop-up ads to Windows computers running the Messenger service. He claims the technology isn't like e-mail spamming, because PC users can turn off a feature in Windows to block the pop-ups.

    According to domain records, Rines' company, Odysseus Marketing, also apparently marketed Message Broadcaster, a program designed to inject ads into Web-based message boards.

    Rines acknowledged that he has also hired programmers to develop an "adware" program known as ClientMan. The software is designed to be bundled with free programs such as Kazaa and to generate ad revenue streams. Symantec and others have categorized ClientMan as spyware and say it secretly uploads programs to and downloads information from the user's system."

    Exiled Spam King's Go-Go Life
    http://www.wired.com/news/print/0,1294,60714,00.html

    Linda Buquet 714.754.1280 :: Catalyst eMarketing Promotion & PR (Partner Relations)
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  7. #7
    ABW Veteran jc101's Avatar
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    merchants Ebudae and everyone make sure you checkout this one too


    http://abw.infopop.cc/6/ubb.x?a=tpc&...9&m=6506026133

    and also watch out for this deadly parasite:

    Messenger service

    http://abw.infopop.cc/6/ubb.x?a=tpc&...9&m=9986041913

    the 2nd one is pretty damaging make sure you get that feature in windows turned off!

    freedom, it's not freedom till you build a business model where you can leave and the commissions will still be there. :0).

  8. #8
    Content $ Queen Ebudae's Avatar
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    you can read about the slimy bottom feeder here:

    tired-of-spam.home.comcast.net/odysseus.html



    Ebudae

    If you understand, things are just as they are...
    if you do not understand, things are just as they are.

  9. #9
    Content $ Queen Ebudae's Avatar
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    I would also like to say....

    One sale I made last year was a whopper - 18 thou from a BANNER!! Now, if that banner had been overwritten with these guys, no sale would have been made.

    Merchants - we lose, you lose!

    Ebudae

    If you understand, things are just as they are...
    if you do not understand, things are just as they are.

  10. #10
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    I found a work around for those interested:

    http://abw.infopop.cc/6/ubb.x?a=tpc&...9&m=3646006355

    SandraR

  11. #11
    ABW Ambassador Packy's Avatar
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    Gator did use to over lay their banners on pages but I think they have stopped doing it. At least I haven't seen any evidence in quite some time that they are still doing it.

    Ebudae,

    I've used ad-aware 4 times so far on 4 different computers and they are 4 for 4 on removing any problems that I have had that some of the other programs couldn't remove. It's free by the way. Just a thought.

    Merchant Coincidences, One of the Wonders of the World

    Coincidence Me baby!

  12. #12
    Outsourced Program Manager Chris -  AMWSO's Avatar
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    This is all running from a none affiluate network ad system though correct? So nothing that can be done via the networks, so the only option is a direct complaint to.... who?

    Not being in the US I'm not sure what channels to complain are open to me and how to persue them.

    Cheers

    Chris


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  13. #13
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Sure the liberals in NH. figure these 2 professional con-men and spammers will change their spots. The whossie lawyers let them off the hook the first time so they moved from being spam wanks into being partners in B-a-HO operations. Truth be known. Once you fall into the easy money trap of being a part time spammer, BHO lead fee pusher or condone P2P theft your never going to be anything more then a cyberthief. Anything legit has no appeal as the grey areas undefined by current laws are the breeding ground for your next "tricks for clicks" scheme.

    Some more background on Rines and some other wanks who I hope contracted AIDs and will leave this earth real soon.

    http://www.wired.com/news/business/0,1367,60714,00.html

    http://www.wired.com/news/business/0..._story_related

    Mike & Charlie ...

    If they won't adopt and feed a bird ..flip them one! BBQ some Gator and remember to flush WhenU..

  14. #14
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    Mike, time to take your pills, your medication is wearing off.

  15. #15
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    THANK YOU for pointing this out. However, I'm really not sure what to do at this point.

    Any help would be appreciated.

    -patrice

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  16. #16
    Content $ Queen Ebudae's Avatar
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    Ok - here are my thoughts...

    If all of the merchants would contact these people below it would help - because a letter from little old me will not hold as much weight as would a bunch of complaints from big businesses. That is why I am asking on behalf of all of us for the merchants to help us!

    The Federal Trade Comission
    http://www.ftc.gov/index.html

    The Federal Trade Comission - Information for businesses
    http://www.ftc.gov/ftc/business.htm

    Use this form to submit a complaint to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Bureau of Consumer Protection about a particular company or organization.
    https://rn.ftc.gov/pls/dod/wsolcq$.s..._ORG_CODE=PU01

    I think a filed complaint plus a letter from your legal dept would help.

    Thanks!!

    Ebudae

    If you understand, things are just as they are...
    if you do not understand, things are just as they are.

  17. #17
    Outsourced Program Manager Chris -  AMWSO's Avatar
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    Thanks we'll go look at that form.

  18. #18
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    Hi Folks. As owner of DriveWerks, I will lend my weight behind any effort to stop this. However, I'm not a lawyer, so I'm not sure where to start. Technically too, these blockers are probably not blocking anything on my site, so technically, I'm not being violated. Unless, I guess, my banner on your site is considered my real estate? Maybe, I'm not sure how that's considered under the law.

    I do know that there are cases being decided about how local TV stations were substituting in ads for sporting events like over-writing the ads behind home plate with their own local ones. This obviously dimished the value of "buying" that spot behind home plate. Not sure if there were any lawsuits involved, but it might be worth looking into for precedent.

    In the meantime, I'm sure that there are clever ways (javascript?) that you can fool these autobots into thinking that these banners are not really banners, but actual content. Have them link to HTML pages that have only a META tag redirect on them. I doubt that these banner-stealer plug-ins would swap out an image that has a static URL?

    Just some ideas.

    -Wayne

    DriveWerks.com

  19. #19
    ABW Ambassador Akiva's Avatar
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    Wasn't this isue part of the Claria (Gator) lawsuit?

    Akiva Bergstrom, Affiliate Partner Manager
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  20. #20
    Content $ Queen Ebudae's Avatar
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Akiva:
    Wasn't this isue part of the Claria (Gator) lawsuit?

    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Well, I think that was settled out of court and the parties were told not to tell what the agreement was.

    http://news.zdnet.co.uk/internet/eco...9118886,00.htm

    But a further search of Znet has many articles on the subject. Quoteing one below:

    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> Robin Webster, chief executive of the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), said the group's board of directors is demanding that Gator stop its practice of selling ads designed to intentionally block those sold on its members' Web sites. The IAB, which represents the $8bn online ad business, is also considering pressing the issue with the Federal Trade Commission.

    "By placing ads on other companies' Web sites without their authorisation, this deceives the consumer by visually altering the Web sites; it falsely suggests some affiliation between the Gator ads and the host Web site, and it interferes with the revenues of the Web sites," the IAB's Webster said.

    "It's really unfair competition that's going on when one company can interpose itself between a publisher and the audience." <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    So my thoughts are this - it is unfair business practices to you the merchant because they are intefering with your doing business on my site (and others).

    All I am asking is for a complaint to be made so the Federal Trade Comission can see how far reaching this issue is and hopefully someday they will get enough complaints that they will do something about it.

    The only other option IMHO is to continue to let these guys steal from you.

    The ball is in your court...

    Ebudae

    If you understand, things are just as they are...
    if you do not understand, things are just as they are.

  21. #21
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    Here is how I see it, after reading these threads here and other places for a few days.

    I feel like the real key lies in the fact that these are web pages owned by people, and the norton software is altering them - in alot of cases, right down to the source code. You can make this same argument with popup ads, too...but I think selective removal of certain "ads" leaving sometimes incoherent content is different than blocking all popups, which is a more universal all-encompassing action. (ie, some BeFree links don't get blocked, some do...someone at Norton has made some parameters that are clearly subjective.)

    Now, ebudae has said that merchants have more clout and should be the ones to complain, and that could be true - we may have more clout. But it is the affiliate's site that is being altered, so I'm not sure how successful we'd be. But we do have a business interest in their sites being viewed correctly (and the banner/link could be our 'real estate' as Wayne from Drivewerks said) so I figure us contacting the FTC is still worth something.

    Affiliates already are shouldering so much weight and are in battle with so many people - the networks, unfair programs, the parasites - but it seems like the most logical argument to the FTC is still made by them. It's their source code being altered.

    I'm not saying the affiliates should handle this, merchants have no responsibility...not at all. But concerned affiliates, if they still have the bandwith and the energy after everything else, should also complain.

    That's my opinion...and of course, I could feel differently as more info becomes available.

    -patrice

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  22. #22
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Patrice you are correct thta affiliates like me should complain to the FTC on the arbritary removal of content I placed on my site. The Norton and other firewall/Ad Blocker programs by setting the removal feature ON by default eliminates user choice from Norton's arguement. The FTC should force Norton and others to make this a purposeful CHOICE by their end-users.

    The other thing is IF Norton and the others doesn't block BHO popup alerts then the networks should be sued by both the affiliates and merchants. It was the networks response to Norton's demand to clean up their sleezebag affiliates,Dupers and clickstream spywarez that got them on the blacklist of blocked domains. If the BHO's are skating thru this unharmed then the networks are watching eBates and all leap in revenue earnings and deciding to marginalize 800,000 affiliates and encourage more BHO partnerships.

    Mike & Charlie ...

    If they won't adopt and feed a bird ..flip them one! BBQ some Gator and remember to flush WhenU..

  23. #23
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    I agree that choice should always be first and foremost, and that removing content is removing an element of choice, but you know norton is going to say that the customer already made a choice when they decided to purchase the software, and when they decided to either leave the defaults in place, or decided not to read about what the defaults were. And that argument is probably not going to go too far.

    But changing actual html content made, and PAID FOR, by someone else...I think that is really the weak chink in the armor.

    -patrice

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  24. #24
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
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    Patrice and all others here have to understand I do not have the full Norton package installed on my system. DOES NORTON'S DEFAULT SETTINGS LEAVE THE BHO POPUPS ALONE!!! The user choice issue is to activate the portion that defaces our sites and makes them unusable for the intended service we offer shoppers. The FTC can force Norton to change their defaults to make this a conscious CHOICE

    Mike & Charlie ...

    If they won't adopt and feed a bird ..flip them one! BBQ some Gator and remember to flush WhenU..

  25. #25
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    Perhaps both can be addressed. Would that dilute the complaint? If so, I guess you just have to ask yourself which is more important. That's something only you can decide.

    -patrice

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